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204                 HISTORY OF PERSIA
familiar to him and not very far from his base. Crossing
the Oxus with a powerful and well-equipped army, he
marched into the valley of the Gurgan and camped near
Astrabad. Its ruler, who had submitted but had since
rebelled, resisted for a month, and then, seeing no hope
of success, left his state to be ravaged, and fled. After
the conquest of Mazanderan, Tamerlane advanced on Rei
and Sultania, and having taken these royal cities returned
to Samarcand.
The Campaign in Azerbaijan^ Georgia and Pars, A.H.
788-790 (1386-1388).—Two years later a second and
even more distant campaign was undertaken, in the course
of which Tamerlane occupied Azerbaijan, crossed the
Aras, overran Georgia, and received the submission of
the Princes of Gilan, of the Khan of the Lesgians, and of
the Prince of Shirwan. His next objective was Van, the
capital of the rising Kara Kuyunlu dynasty, which was
sacked; its Prince, Kara Yusuf, leaving it to its fate and
remaining in exile until the Conqueror had quitted the
Zayn-ul-Abidin, son of Shah Shuja of the Muzaffar
dynasty, now occupied the throne of Fars. He had not
followed out his father's policy of submission to Tamer-
lane, but had imprisoned his envoy. Consequently the
Great Conqueror ordered a march on Isfahan, which
formed part of the Muzaffarid dominions* This city
surrendered, and a heavy contribution had been almost
collected when the chance playing of a drum brought
together a mob which attacked and slew the 3000 Tartars
quartered in the city, Tamerlane was merciless in
avenging this outbreak, and 70,000 heads built into
pyramids taught a terrible lesson.
Tamerlane and Hafiz.—Shiraz hastened to open its
gates when the invaders approached. Tamerlane sent for
Hafiz, and the celebrated interview is described by
Dolatshah as follows :
" I have subdued with this sword the greater part of
the earth; I have depopulated a vast number or cities
and provinces in order to increase the glory and wealth
of Samarcand and Bokhara, the ordinary places of my